To kick off the New Year, Hood Critic Magazine caught up with singer/songwriter Barth Beasley for a brief interview on him and his new single “Run On To Deroit”. Here’s what he had to say…
HCM. Tell us a little bit about your single “Run On To Detroit”…How did you come up with the concept for this title?
‘Run On To Detroit’ is my new hit single. It literally started one day after getting a bald fade in the barbershop I go to in Battle Creek. I overheard a conversation from one of the barbers about needing to get out of town for a weekend and how he had a spot in Detroit where he stays and just relaxes, has some drinks and just kicks it. For years I wondered about his eye but no one ever talked about what happened to it. I also got to hear about life struggles and stories about clients going through things but they always remained nameless. The barbershop in a black neighborhood is pure entertainment and poetry to me on a weekly basis no matter in Michigan or LA. Anyway I sat down at the piano one day and started to play a groove having memories of when my Dad and our family was rolling in on the 94 East and passing the big Uniroyal Tire that let you know you were now in Detroit.
Going back to the story this brother instead of being able to afford desert after a meal in the hotel restaurant would ask the girl he was going to marry to make him a cake as he was saving every cent he could to buy her an engagement and wedding ring. That cake every time he went to Detroit was the best cake he’d ever had. By the way he never goes to Detroit in the summer, it is always in the winter time.
HCM. How did you end up working with Allan Phillips?
Allan and I have had a mutual respect for years. While he was blowing up as a producer we kept in contact which is a rare thing in this business. Most of the people I have met have no concern for you unless you are working on a project together or your famous ship has sailed in. Allan is a genuine soul. During my time after walking away from music he understood and especially was encouraging about me coming back to Michigan to take care of my ailing mother. He told me it was the right thing to do. It was very unexpected that he offered to produce me when I made the decision to start writing again in August of 2014. At that time it had been eight years of coaching soccer and other interest for me. All I know is that he believed in me and believes in me as a person, friend and music artist. He inspires everyone around him as I saw in the Run On To Detroit single sessions. His heart is his word and his word is heart.
HCM. We noticed that you’ve had overseas success early on in your career, what made you decide to return to the U.S. to continue your music?
It’s a goal and challenge that I wanted to address in my life. Not to be morbid but I have attended nine funerals after moving back to Michigan for family and friends. Everyone of those loved ones would still want to be here today to see and live another day and finish their unfinished business. I got unfinished business on and off the stage here so I must go after my goals. I just want to be able to fill needs that I see and am tired of not being able to help in every way I want. I want to do it anonymously though without any fanfare.
HCM. What do you think your “biggest break” or “greatest opportunity” has been so far in your musical career?
Now it has been to work with Allan Phillips which has inspired me to write some of the best songs in my life. The friendship with RM has also been a huge impact. As far as opportunities it was signing with Taurus music back in the day which took me in the early years to Europe., winning the “Voice of Asia” as the first American to do so, acting in “That Thing You Do” and receiving a Thank You on the sound track from Tom Hanks and Gary Goetzman. Meeting Ray Charles and working with actor Bill Cobb was incredible and I absolutely live in the knowledge received from them.
HCM. If you had the opportunity to start over from the beginning of your music career, would you change anything about it? If so, what would it be?
No. Faith is a journey with God I know for a fact. Not to sound religious but I know he has had me in the lab of life and I will continue working on myself. I learn all the time from people I don’t know and friends. I am a work in progress. Checkout the poem Footprints!
HCM. What are your plans for the near future and is there a new EP/album or tour in the works?
Yes 30 songs narrowed down to 14 songs for the CD. Breaking the singles has been our most important goal. The next single is either the song “New Soul” or “I Use To Be”. On “I Use To Be” my friend from high school Brian Koski, who is an incredible guitarist, will be playing the tasty melodic and feel good rhythms. Look, the boy can play his face off also as a soloist but his feel to compliment the piano and vocal melody is extraordinary.
We have 8 of the 14 songs done in preproduction. The other six are being revisited as I have been writing all the time. People deserve my best and that is what they are going to get. We also have some shows and appearances coming up. One of them is possibly going to be on ‘World Cast’ which will be filmed in New York. I will be doing a sit down interview and will perform as well.
HCM. Where can new fans of your music find or contact you?
They can find the single “Run On To Detroit” through CD Baby, iTunes etc… I am also on Reverbnation and Facebook. I am grateful for all the positive feedback. There are a lot of write ups out there that are very positive and if you want to look back at some of the older songs they can be found on I tunes as well. They date back to 2006 when I left behind music. Those songs will be coming in a different light when we start playing shows. I will absolutely be blown away when we play one and the crowd knows the words. That will be an honor to hear for me and the band. ROCK N SOUL POP TO YOU ALL AND THANKS!!!!